Yom Kippur for Christians

Resource Notes
Corporate Prayer Resources

The Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, which will be celebrated September 26th this year, should be a significant time for Christians to pause and learn from our Jewish Brothers.

The Yom Kippur holiday is one of the Seven Feasts of Israel which was established in the Bible by God’s command. Three of the Feasts, Passover, First Fruits, and Unleavened Bread, are associated with the death and resurrection of Christ. The fourth, Pentecost, points to the birth of the Church on that very day. The last three, Trumpets, Day of Atonement, and Tabernacles speak prophetically of the return of Christ. Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, reminds of that Christ has made atonement for us so we can live as children of God.

A second truth we can take from Yom Kippur is the understanding that Christians have failed to appreciate their Jewish roots for most of the Church’s history. Beginning of the Church’s rejection to Jewish God-given calendar at the Council of Nicea in 325 AD, the Church has marginalized its Jewish Believers . Later on, the Church brought shame upon itself by persecuting the Jews in direct contradiction to its own Scriptures (See Romans 11:25-32). The Day of Atonement is a good time for the Church to repent and acknowledge its Jewish roots.

Finally, we were reminded on Yom Kippur in 1973 that God has miraculously formed and kept modern day Israel, when Israel was attached by its neighbors. In that war, as in the previous wars, the world was amazed by the unexpected victory of Israel against the overwhelming odds. The world simply can’t see that God’s plan for Israel cannot be thwarted. Let us pray that we can share in the blessings as Israel’s friend, and not share in the curses reserved for its enemies.

So we Christians have a lot to think about and a lot to pray about this Yom Kippur.

And don’t forget to pray for the peace of Jerusalem.


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